AstraZeneca unveils its brand new open-office center in the Bay Area. Do you love it, or hate it?
The Bay Area biotech hub is home to a gleaming string of modern-day tributes to the open-office space. And now AstraZeneca has joined the cutting-edge set with its own HOK-designed facility in South San Francisco.
After building up a portfolio of real estate in the San Francisco area through acquisitions and growth, AstraZeneca has brought together staffers from Acerta Pharma, MedImmune, Pearl Therapeutics and AstraZeneca’s TIDE — Technology Innovation & Delivery Excellence — at the popular Cove at Oyster Point. Some of its neighbors include Denali, which has its own open-space floor and plans to move to a larger space nearby, as well as the stealthy Calico. And they are all just around the corner from Genentech, which has helped populate the local hub with its veteran researchers and execs.
AstraZeneca has been building and consolidating quite a bit of space since Pascal Soriot took the helm 5 years ago. He’s still waiting for the opening of the new campus HQ in Cambridge, UK, where he’s been pushing to remake the company into a modern-age pharma giant that can grow revenue from new products pushing through the pipeline.
Building offices, though, can be more certain than building new drugs. And the company is a clear devotee to the idea that a staff that works shoulder to shoulder in shared spaces can be more productive. The new facility boasts of open windows to shine a light on the lab, along with organic food in the cafeteria and an on-campus gym for employees.
MedImmune chief Bahija Jallal noted in a statement:
The opening of our new South San Francisco site brings together the best of both worlds — a shared drive across our employee base to advance great science and bring new treatments to patients, while providing an opportunity to tap into the Bay Area’s transformative biotech ecosystem, helping to foster great progress internally and externally.
Sometimes, though, open offices tend to be more popular with top execs than the rank and file, when you can have a quiet chat about it in the elevator. So we’re running a snap poll on the subject.
Open office spaces: Love them or hate them? (Click here for a direct link to the survey.)
We’ll give you the results tomorrow.
Image: AstraZeneca site at South San Francisco. ASTRAZENECA